Why hairdressers are trusted and estate agents aren’t

The Two-Minute Sunday Sermon

Every year a survey is published which consistently shows estate agents are among the least trusted people in the UK.

Just like a seasonal story reporting on the dire drought of sprouts or prosecco, this train of mistrust article always rocks up at a Christmas station.

And why would this year be any different?

What have YOU done to change that perception?

The 2019 Ipsos MORI Veracity Index asked 1019 British people aged over 15 years-old a simple question. It went like this:

“Now we will read you a list of different types of people – For each of them tell us if you trust them to tell the truth or not?”

Estate agents came fifth lowest with just 30 per cent of people saying they trusted you.

Compare this to humble hairdressers who scored 68 per cent on the trustometer back in the 2016 equivalent of this survey.

The public at large are more than twice as likely to trust them than they are you.


Well, I’ve been mulling this over and here are some of my thoughts.

A good barber or hairdresser will always have a chat with you.

It might be inane and boring, but they’ll always show an interest in you – ‘How’s the kids? Going anywhere nice on holidays?’ That general kind of thing makes it seem like they are interested in you.

They are often useful founts of local knowledge sharing news about what’s happening in the neighbourhood. When I was a local journalist, my best contacts were publicans, taxi drivers and head and shoulders above the rest, hairdressers.

Their work is also accompanied by very clear evidence of how good they are – within seconds of that final snip you’ll be able to see the finished results.

What you can learn from them

There are parallels here with what my Estate Agent Club Members who are highly trusted in their patches do regularly.


Have a distinct tone of voice – chatty and friendly, not boring and boastful.

Produce newsletters, articles and blogs regularly – help not hype, tell don’t sell.

And they have an obsession with winning glowing testimonials and reviews and making the most of them. They provide evidence of their expertise.

It ain’t rocket science folks (scientists were trusted by 84 per cent of those surveyed in 2019), but it works.

Good News

The good news is there were four more professions in front of you on the least likely to trust list.

Journalists (I’m a former one who now only works with estate agents – I wonder what that says about me?).

Then Government Ministers, advertising executives and top of the ‘don’t trust a bleeding word they say pile’ – politicians in general.

In my experience, most agents can be trusted, and journalists can too, but politicians? Well, let’s leave that here for now.

Thanks for reading and here’s to your next instruction.


Father Jerry Lyons

The church of estateagentcontent.co.uk